The badly decomposed body that was found by a fly-in moose hunter on the Susitna River last week went to the State Medical Examiner's office in Anchorage and have been positively identified according to the Alaska State Troopers.
The remains found on the west bank of the Susitna River approximately 1 mile upstream of its confluence with Tyone Creek were identified as those of 51-year-old Wasilla resident Bartlett Barnes.
Bartlett Barnes was on a hunting trip himself when he tried to cross Butte Creek on an ATV last year in September. While attempting to cross the swollen creek, Barnes dissappeared after being swept away. The group of hunters that Barnes was with reported the incident to troopers by phone. They had been stranded by the high water at Butte Creek at about mile 80 of the Denali Highway when the incident occurred.
Alaska Wildlife troopers requested assistance from Helo-1 and Helo-2. Helo-1 was unable to access the area due to inclement weather, Helo-2 was able to respond and searched Butte Creek as well as an expanse of the Susitna River below the creek with no success.
Helo-2 responded to the scene when Barnes’ remains were recovered last week as well. This time the chopper was able to successfully complete its mission for the ill-fated Barnes.